Ring ring, ring ring…
Lucy heard the phone. She was sitting comfortably in the living room, which seemed miles away from the telephone, constantly shouting for attention in the study. Groaning, she hesitantly dragged herself off the couch and went over to pick it up. What kind of desperate telemarketer was trying to phone her at eleven in the night anyway? Whoever it was, she was ready to shoo them away with the most impatient indecency.
“Hello, who is this?” She asked, rolling her eyes as she glanced down to the floor.
The voice on the other end of the phone made Lucy stop.
It sounded raspy and unnaturally deep, unlike anything she’d heard before. She was no longer angry. There was just something about that voice that terrified her, but she just couldn’t put her finger on what it was.
“Who is this? And…may I ask, how do you know my name?”
The eerie reply she’d been expecting was delivered without fail.
“Is this Miss Lucy Wilson?”
“Yes, it is indeed. And who is this?”
“I’m afraid that’s not necessary for you to know,” replied the voice, “all you need to know is that I’ve come to return your cellphone you lost a while ago. Your address was on the Lost-and-Found catalogue, and it’s awfully lucky that I’ve been able to find the phone you wanted back. You should be more careful next time, or you might land yourself in trouble.”
Lucy hesitated. The man wasn’t lying – she’d recalled the events that had taken place a month ago, and misplacing her cell phone was certainly somewhere on that list. She’d looked everywhere, but it seemed that it had simply jumped out of her pocket while she wasn’t aware. The smartphone had cost a fairly decent amount of money, so she decided to put her address on the local Lost-and-Found website. Now that this man had found it for her, she was beginning to feel grateful towards him despite his eccentricity.
She was surprised at his decency – she hated to admit it, but she knew that if she was in his position, she would’ve most likely taken the phone for herself. However, something seemed off… not with the man himself, but the whole situation in general. Why would he decide to call so late at night?
“Ah yes, I remember now. Thank you so much. I’m truly grateful; I never thought anyone would really find that thing!”
“So, where can I meet you? It would be great if you could come over so I could thank you personally.”
“Sorry, I don’t quite get you.”
“…uhh…I mean, could I meet you in person somewhere so you could return my phone? Or do you prefer to do it by post?”
“But there’s no need for that now, Lucy. Just look outside your window.”
Lucy paused. What was the man talking about? Had he left the phone outside her house?
“I’m sorry, but why?”
“Just look outside your window.”
“Just LOOK OUTSIDE YOUR WINDOW.”
The demanding voice of the man was chilling. Lucy kept silent as she lifted the blinds up slightly, scanning her front garden. She continued to pull the blinds until the whole window was exposed, but as far as she could see, there was nothing that stuck out in the garden except for her garbage bin.
“I’ve realized that we’ve been talking all this time, but I still don’t know your name. What can I refer to you as?”
“You can call me Jeff.”
The phone hung up. Confused, Lucy sighed and put the phone back in its holder. People were so unpredictable these days. Turning around, she thought she saw a flash in the corner of her eye. However, there was still nothing outside the window, so she began to put the blinds down.
Suddenly, she saw a face appear out of nowhere on the other side of the window pane.
Lucy screamed as she instinctively backed away, dropping the blinds down with a crash. The face was shrouded in an instant, but she could have sworn she’d seen it. Its wide, bulging eyeballs were surrounded by shriveled up black eyelids, and its face was bleached white. It had a dry, bristly fringe of black hair and a smile carved into its face, almost severing the jawbone from the rest of the skull. Lucy couldn’t even tell if it was a human face or not. Whatever it was, she’d never been more terrified in her life.
Knock, knock, knock…
“I’ve got your phone, Lucy…why don’t you let me in? Don’t you want it back?”
Knock, knock, knock…
Beads of sweat rolled down the side of Lucy’s face. She recognized the voice outside her window – it was the same voice she’d heard on the other end of the phone. What horrified her even more was the fact that she wouldn’t be able to call the police, because the man would be listening right outside her house. He would be able to smash the window and get in at any minute. After that, there would be no knowing what would happen to her.
Knock, knock, knock…
Lucy started to cry. With her hand over her mouth, she turned and ran sobbing out of the study and into the living room. She searched the cabinets wildly and fumbled for the key at the bottom. Grabbing it, she slammed the doors shut and unlocked the back door.
She turned around momentarily to hear the sound of glass breaking. Screaming wildly, she ran out of the door and through the garden, getting the ends of her dress stuck in some thorns. She tore the bows off the end of the dress. She needed to get away from that man…that thing, as quickly as possible.
Grabbing the top of the fence, Lucy started to frantically pull herself up. She turned to see the man closing the living room door behind him as he stepped into the garden. He wasn’t even running after her. He was just standing in the garden, amused at her pathetic attempts to escape.
Slowly, Jeff walked towards her. Lucy was still trying to pull herself over the wooden fence, but her arms just didn’t seem strong enough.
Jeff grabbed her legs and pulled her off the wall, slamming her onto the ground. Tears filled her eyes as she begged him to spare her. She tried to pull herself away, but his foot was planted firmly onto her back, pinning her to the ground.
He tilted his head and pulled out a knife, tracing the path of his cut along her throat. Lucy whimpered, staring into his eyes in fear. Tears rushed down her face as she saw him take the pink, glowing cell phone out of his pocket, bending it backwards until it broke in half with a 'snap'. The glow faded slowly as he chucked the broken compartments onto the floor. The sickening 'cracking' sound could be heard again as he stepped on its remains, making the screen disintegrate into a thousand tiny pieces of glass.
Jeff leaned in closer as he raised the knife.
“Go to sleep.”